THE FOLLOWING IS A NEWS RELEASE FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF MEMPHIS:
MEMPHIS, TN-- After a week of hoping for the best, Tiger Nation learned Wednesday evening that former University basketball standout Lorenzen Wright had tragically died at the age of 34. of Memphis
“The entire University athletic family is deeply saddened by the tragic loss of Lorenzen Wright,” said Memphis Director of Athletics R.C. Johnson. “He is and will forever be a part of the fabric that is Tiger basketball. of Memphis
“Lorenzen and his teammates provided Tiger fans with so many wonderful memories and through his efforts helped continue the legacy of Memphis Tiger basketball. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Lorenzen's parents, family and children."
One of the most exciting players to wear a Tiger uniform, Wright was a huge fan favorite in his two-year stint with the program. The Memphis, Tenn., native finished his career as one of the most decorated players in school history, earning All-America honors as a sophomore and Freshman All-America distinction in his inaugural collegiate campaign. A 1995 All-Great Midwest Conference first team pick and 1996 All-Conference USA first team selection, Wright is the only player in the program’s history to earn first team accolades from two different leagues.
As a freshman in 1994-95, he was named the Great Midwest Conference Newcomer of the Year, as well as earning Great Midwest Conference All-Newcomer Team and USBWA All-District Team honors. Wright was selected to the 1996 Conference USA All-Tournament Team his sophomore season.
A two-year letterwinner, Wright netted over 1,000 points and stands in the No. 43 spot on the Tigers’ career scoring chart with 1,026 points. The 6-foot-11 forward led Memphis in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots both years he wore the Blue and Gray and averaged a double-double for his career with 16.0 points and 10.3 rebounds. Wright finished his career with 31 double-doubles, which are the seventh-most in school history.
The freshman single-season and single-game rebounding record-holder, Wright helped lead the Tigers to back-to-back 20-win campaigns and consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, advancing to the Sweet Sixteen in 1995. During his two seasons, Memphis won the 1994-95 Great Midwest Conference regular season crown and the 1995-96 Conference USA regular season title.
Wright entered the NBA Draft following his sophomore campaign and was the No. 7 overall pick by the Los Angeles Clippers. His last NBA season was 2008-09 with the Cleveland Cavaliers, and he also played with the Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies and Sacramento Kings.
In the fall of 2009, Wright was inducted into the M-Club Hall of Fame.